i’m sorry, zucchini

roasted tomato on summer squash

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summer squash with roasted tomatoes recipe

If you have checked out my about page you know that I grew up in the sticks.

A particularly memorable feature of my surroundings was a gigantic garden. I mean, it was as if we were preparing for a foretold famine with that garden. Maintaining it was… a challenge, to put it lightly. Rock picking, one of the more groan-inducing chores, was like conducting a grand-scale archaeological dig. Only rather than discovering valuable historic treasures, we found, well, rocks. And when it came time for the actual harvesting, it all came shooting up out of the ground at such a rate so as to make it impossible for us to keep up with it. The result was, granted, a lot of fresh food, but rather cumbersome in size. One of such mutant veggies that often graced our dinner table was the zucchini.

I cannot tell you how I loathed those zucchinis. My mother did her best with them, using the timeless method of getting children to eat something undesirable: smother it with ground beef and cheese. Unfortunately, despite her efforts, I used the timeless method of avoiding something undesirable: Eating all the ground beef and cheese and saying I was full. The thing was, I grew up in a finish-your-plate-or-you’ll-finish-it-for-breakfast kind of household. So my method left me with a hideously large zucchini, naked and lifeless, which I still had to eat. A shudder, a final plea, and then a bite chew and swallow, followed by another shudder. Such was what influenced my view of zucchinis.

eating healthy vegan gluten-free

At some point, while strolling through a Montreal market bursting with fresh veg no doubt, I came to admit to myself a change of heart. Gazing at those green and yellow delightfully normal-sized summer squash, I thought, Maybe there’s a place for them in my life after all. That was merely the beginning of a blossoming relationship. Since that day, zucchinis and I are tight. Real tight.

This recipe is a real ode to veggies. No ground meat. No cheese. And served with quinoa! *gasp* It’s not exactly a stuffed zucchini recipe…it’s more, topped. I didn’t want to waste any of the zucchini! Trust me, it’s a healthy, happy dinner for two.

quinoa recipes

roasted tomato on summer squash recipe

2 medium zucchinis
1/2 tbs olive oil
sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 medium tomatoes
1 garlic clove
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
handful of black olives, halved
handful of almond slivers
thinly sliced basil, to garnish

Heat oven at 220°C (425°F).

Slice your zucchinis or yellow squash in half, lengthwise. Place cut side up in a roasting pan, drizzle with some olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Chop up your tomatoes into large chunks and place in an ovenproof pan (I used a small cast-iron skillet). Thinly slice the garlic and toss with the tomato and a tiny bit of olive oil. Season with a touch of salt.

Ideally I would have used cherry tomatoes, but that would have required a trip to the supermarket where I would undoubtedly have seen many other more “ideal” items which would have had me violating the terms of my parole budget.

Roast the zucchini and tomatoes at the same time, until the tomato is bursting and the zucchini is tender, about 30 minutes.

Now we’re ready to remove and assemble! Spoon the roasted tomatoes onto the sliced zucchini or yellow squash and top with red onion, black olives, almond slivers and basil. Drizzle with some more oil, if desired, and serve with quinoa.

healthy stuffed zucchini recipe with quinoa

I’m sorry, zucchini. I’m sorry I undervalued you, and misspelled you for so long.

posted in meatless wonders, sideshows, the main event .

28 Responses to i’m sorry, zucchini

  1. Now that’s a healthy and tasty stuffed zucchini. Beautiful colour, delicious flavours!

  2. That looks very healthy and flavoursome my friend 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  3. Miriam says:

    Our darling mums and how they made us hate our vegetables!
    I felt like this about Brussels spouts, squash, and anything that didn’t end in —–ato

  4. What is with those rocks? I swear they grow. I used to pay my kids a penny a rock. Ooops! Dating myself, aren’t I! Anyway, this is a terrifically fresh use of zucchini. Love it!

  5. Brittany says:

    Uhmm have you been living in my brain!? I have been DYING to make some kind of zucchini “boat” like this!! Your version BLOWS any other version I have seen out of the water! I LOVE the quinoa side addition. DELISH my friend, you indeed know my taste buds!

  6. Awwww yay for the returned zucchini love! I bet they missed you! 😀

  7. I wish I was that cool with veggies-I totally need to hide them to eat them

  8. love2dine says:

    You are a real inspiration and I wish I could follow in your footsteps.

  9. Liz says:

    Mmmmmm….this is one lovely dish! I love every single ingredient. I’m so glad that the lowly zucchini has redeemed itself! I think I felt the same way about the eggplant my mom made till I finally tasted it made well 🙂

  10. I love zucchini, but I have to admit, it runs wild in the garden, and I end up running out of ideas on what to do with it. This dish looks so good, and I love quinoa.

  11. Bryan says:

    Zucchini are great, especially the smaller ones, so tasty. Cool recipe!

  12. Zucchini is my fav and I have them almost everyday. Your recipe is new to me but sure I will have this is mind for the next round of zucchini at home, healthy and tempting.

  13. Ha! Glad to hear that you and zucchini are back on speaking terms again.

  14. Hehe I am lucky I loved and still love zucchini. Mum used to grate them and fry them up with butter and garlic. Yum!

  15. Kristina says:

    Haha that’s too funny about the zucchini! I was with that and broccoli…unless it was smothered in some super nutritious velvet I wasn’t going to get within a foot of it 🙂

    And love your zucchini dish! Looks so fresh and yummy, perfect way to use up summer veg!

  16. kyleen says:

    Anything smothered in cheese and beef will taste good, but I imagine that this stuffed zucchini definitely won’t disappoint either. This looks so garden fresh and healthy. Yum!

  17. Emma says:

    I used to feel this way about most food. Thankfully I’ve changed my wicked ways, and now enjoy many more things. All for the better!

    So sorry again about the package, things have been so tight that I couldn’t even afford to buy butter last week. I promise I’ll get it to you soon!

  18. GORGEOUS dish!! Wow. I am sorry you had such a bad relationship with zucchini for so long, and I am so glad you reconciled. I’ve had this love/hate relationship with Zucchini for years…but mostly I love it now.

  19. Parsley Sage says:

    Bwa ha! I never spell zucchini right 🙂

    This is an ace recipe! I’m in the process of trying to set up a garden and this yummy veg is on my wish list…maybe I can rock this fabulous dish next year with a giant zucchini from my own massive garden!

    • kale says:

      it’s such a misleading word, that zookeenee!

      there’s nothing like having your own garden; you’ll be able to create some fantastic dishes with fresh ingredients!

  20. how can you hate zucchinis?!?!! theyre sooo good
    my fridge is filled with em right now cuz my mom grows em in her garden 😛

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